Below (and attached) you can find a summary of activity of the group for the month of June.
Best regards, Sophie Alvarez
The latest June topic was the one on Communities of Practice, 10 years later. It started with a question about whether there were any fundamentally new insights, methods, approaches when it comes to CoPs ten years later. Some proposed that nothing fundamental has changed- yet everything is different. The main difference is the new ICT- Social Media and other technical developments, however, “an effective COP is a socially emergent group in which people feel included and confident to share ideas…their value is partially in being a think tank and a repository of tacit knowledge and insights…and to co-create together to adapt their collective experiences and knowledge…” Another dilemma discussed was about whether COPs should be „free“ of institutional trappings, and whether “corporate” or more “structured” COPs can be effective. The conversation continues, acknowledging the complementarity and diversity of different forms of CoPs.
Another conversation was about the pros and cons of mainstreaming KM into organizations or institutions. The question came up while discussing the forthcoming Learning from Invisible CoPs: The role of informal actors and relationships in African food systems- KM4Dev 2017 Harare event 25-26 July. One of the contributors finds it useful to distinguish personal KM, organizational KM and societal KM. The latter one is the Knowledge Sharing Society (KSS), whose functions include awareness raising and training and education in IM and KS, and a more ambitious, society wide mainstreaming. Others propose nurturing both mainstreaming and dedicated approaches, also KM at project level and efforts at strategic program levels. Mainstreaming should mean awareness and a culture of sharing and incentives, not a forced implementation of KS. In the same vein, “embedding” rather than mainstreaming was suggested, since by embedding, KM becomes a part of how things are done rather than a distinct activity with its own staff.
One of our colleagues, in trying to put together a staff directory for her department, asked for advice for having a web-based directory with basic information from each staff member, their picture, bio, position, and areas of knowledge/skills/languages (tick boxes), all searchable. It was suggested that she include areas/skills interested in learning, for future peer learning or other learning/human resource development events. Some of the ideas for setting up the directory were:
- Awesome Table to create a web based, searchable people directory, with Google Forms to collect data – or for users to update their existing profiles.
- The Drupal Commons People Directory, which includes the ability to follow people, Facebook-style status updates, etc. and the full flexibility of Drupal.
- BuddyPress (based on WordPress).
- Linked In Lookup , most of the content is already there, it’s just a question of creating the team. The platform is high tech and powerful, and people have an incentive to keep their profile up to date.
A few participants shared their experience and information on using WhatsApp, Messenger, Telegram, Signal, or other messaging apps in projects. Two shared information resources: one around the benefits of using whatsapp (in the context of working with large groups), and a report on how humanitarian organisations are using ten of the most popular messaging apps, with case studies, comparisons of technical specifications, and a section on information security. Others narrate their experiences and ideas, like that the most powerful thing happens when participants pick platforms to use and do the things that need doing from their perspective, that having a WhatsApp group can be transformational, and since many have access already to the technology, Whatsapp is a convenient platform.
What are the emerging trends in knowledge management 2017 that will influence, guide and support our work? A member asked the community for summaries, links, hints, or thoughts to share. Some of the resources shared were:
- The recent issue of the knowledge management for development journal: ‘Knowledge management for development in 2020: let your imagination fly!’
- From the KM tech side of things: 15 Hot Knowledge Management Trends for 2017
- Which Knowledge Management technologies add most value?
- Conference brochures of KM World (November) and APQC KM Conference 2017 (October)
- APQC published a paper in 2017 with some projections, Preparing for the future of work, APQC’. It touches upon HR, collaboration, AI.
- Future of the Internet and Legal KIM in an artificial world
- USAID body of evidence (and methods for measuring evidence),“Evidence Base for CLA“ (or EB4CLA): Literature Review, USAID LearningDojo, CLAIM Learning Network, CLA Case Competition Analysis, and Additional Studies.
- The PelsKMFramework: KM builds upon activities and conversations by people to learn, research, improve, operate, having an open space, etc.
- Agenda Knowledge for Development – you will probably have seen links and references to this many times on the KM4Dev community.
- Stieglitz coined: scan global and reinvent local
Some trends mentioned:
- M&E of KM strategies and activities
- Moving further away from ‘KM’ as a field unto its own (and rather dipping further into innovation, social learning, engagement, big data, AI etc.)
- The backlash on the social web
- More and more emphasis on storytelling, as high quality human filtering approach
- Driving towards the combination of ultra-sophisticated data grinding on the one hand and human facilitation on the other hand
We had the KM4Dev Online Open Space, for a full report and updates visit the link. Only some of the sessions were reported on here: Euforic´s offering of the first KM4Dev Online Open Space, and KM4Dev in Berlin.
On the thread of Measuring KM – GHKC M&E Case Example Series, the USAID’s flagship knowledge management project, Knowledge for Health (K4Health), has developed a specific process that can help health and development practitioners implement KM from start to finish. Sharing some publicly available KM strategies at the organizational and project level:
Some other resources shared in different threads:
Discover the new IAF Methods Database: Don’t take our word for it – try it out for yourself
ISKO SG – Governance Extravaganza! Enjoy this collection of videos and writings around KM and KO governance.
The age of thoughtlessness, playing God in the lab, and photography as activism at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation
Knowledge as a banyan tree, how bullying in hospitals harms patients, and Harlem’s synchronised swimming team for seniors
Vacancy: Knowledge management consultant, Child Marriage, UNICEF
Invitation: 37th Lausanne SKMF Roundtable, June 22, 2017
Offer of the online SALT programme for facilitation, community engagement and participatory evaluation
11th Conference Community Based Adaptation (CBA11) on Climate Change
Webinar on Foresight in Agriculture: Who is involved in „foresight“?
ISKO-UK conference „Knowledge organisation: what’s the story?“